Friday, April 19, 2024

CNN Legal Analyst Jeffrey Toobin Steps Away from Network, Suspended by The New Yorker After Embarrassing Mistake


Who’s Zoomin’ who, my late friend Aretha Franklin sang once.

Jeffrey Toobin got caught with his pants down on a Zoom call with the staff of the New Yorker and WNYC. Vice says he was masturbating on a video call in front of them. He’s been suspended by the magazine and has “stepped away” from his role as legal analyst on CNN.

It’s an insane episode. Toobin said he was sorry he’d forgotten to mute the video button on the Zoom call. He didn’t say he was sorry about taking out his penis in front of strangers during a work call.

Toobin’s previous Page Six like scandal a decade ago involved having an affair with the daughter of CNN journalist Jeff Greenfield, and having a child with her that he denied.

One day his obit is going to be must-read.

Toobin said: “I made an embarrassingly stupid mistake, believing I was off-camera. I apologize to my wife, family, friends and co-workers. I believed I was not visible on Zoom. I thought no one on the Zoom call could see me. I thought I had muted the Zoom video.”

Toobin obviously didn’t use the Invisibility app on his iPhone 13.

This couldn’t be a worse time for Toobin to be in trouble. He’s in heavy demand at CNN leading up to the election. If there’s a brouhaha with the voting that requires legal action going up to the Supreme Court, he’s the one they’d be counting on. Now that seems highly unlikely. Ditto his work during the Amy Coney Island Barrett vote.

According to reports, The New Yorker has taken this pretty seriously. (WNYC hasn’t chimed in yet.) Editor in chief David Remnick sent this memo to the staff: “Dear All, As you may have read in various news reports today, one of our writers, Jeff Toobin, was suspended after an incident on a Zoom call last week. Please be assured that we take such matters seriously and that we are looking into it. Best, David.”

Toobin’s mother was the late, great network correspondent Marlene Sanders.



Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman
Roger Friedman began his Showbiz411 column in April 2009 after 10 years with Fox News, where he created the Fox411 column. His movie reviews are carried by Rotten Tomatoes, and he is a member of both the movie and TV branches of the Critics Choice Awards. His articles have appeared in dozens of publications over the years including New York Magazine, where he wrote the Intelligencer column in the mid 90s and covered the OJ Simpson trial, and Fox News (when it wasn't so crazy) where he covered Michael Jackson. He is also the writer and co-producer of "Only the Strong Survive," a selection of the Cannes, Sundance, and Telluride Film festivals, directed by DA Pennebaker and Chris Hegedus.

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